Wanda, the lethargic Wizard, spread her hands and disappeared. Yet, in her wake, magic dust slowly settled on the slim table filling the empty plates with a mass of delicious delicacies.
None of her friends initially moved for all of them had eyes fixed on the wondrous spread on the table. Sweet cakes, toffee apples, luscious sticky honey cakes, and lots more were laid out in perfect rows. Glasses of sweetened wine and ice cold water fresh from the mountain streams stood side by side just waiting to be imbibed. Friends looked at each other and smiled, before quickly looking back at all the tasty treats. Pixie Petra broke the spell. She took one step forward and the rush began.
Larder, the ever hungry mongrel, jumped for joy on seeing so many scrumptious goodies in one place. Unknown to any of his friends, he had already squirreled away some of the food when they had looked at each other and began squabbling over who should go first. Competition with his best friend, Moondog, was always fierce as both had often argued over which of them could eat the most. Having lost the last time at another party, Larder, was determined to wolf down as much as he could now.
Alas for Larder, Moondog, had the same idea.
Petra knew what was coming. She stood with both hands on her slim hips and awaited the inevitable. She tried and failed to suppress a build-up of energy deep inside her lithe body as the bickering began. And when the dam broke, she had to sit down quickly as her legs gave way. Her infectious laughter echoed all around the cave. Others joined in. No matter how many times they had seen Larder and Moondog disagree, they all knew that any bad feelings would quickly evaporate. As Petra always reminded them, good friends never stayed rivals for too long.
Only Brown-Back, the badger, ignored Pixie, for he was already gorging himself. Being forced to the back of the queue the rabbits and hedgehogs were not pleased, but as they knew only too well, size really does matter when so many wonderful treats are available.
“These honey cakes are so good,” Henry Hare said to himself as he licked the goo from both his paws.
“So true,” replied Hedgehog Horace. Trying to lick away several dollops of honey stuck to his prickles bought cries of laughter from the mass of rabbits surrounding him.
“Is there any sweet wine left,” Moondog asked to no one in particular as he woofed down another cupcake? “Isn’t it great that all our friends are here, Larder.”
“But where is Wizard Wanda,” Larder retorted as he munched on a soft toffee tart?
“I haven’t seen her,” Moondog said awkwardly through a mouthful of chocolate dessert.
“As the hostess, she should be here,” Brown-Back spoke between lips stuck on something gooey. He loudly burped. “Pardon,” he said.
Wallace, the weasel of too many summers to count, called out to his closest friend. “Tom! Tom! Wherever you are, you silly old owl, wake up and give me a hand.”
After calling out several times, Wallace, finally heard movement from behind a roosting branch erected just for Tom.
“Time to fly over here, old man. I need your help.”
“I was having such a lovely dream about my next supper, Wallace. You’d better have a good reason to spoil my reverie.”
“Yes! Yes! Of course. Wizard Wanda has vanished, again, and I need your keen eyesight to help me find her.”
“At times you can be really annoying, Wallace. She hasn’t disappeared, she’s simply asleep and doesn’t want to be found.”
“But this is her party and as the hostess, she should be here looking after all her guests, Tom.”
“We’re running out of food and drink.”
“Why didn’t you say so before?” Tom stretched his wings and flew under the legs of a large wooden table. Peeking his head out from under the tablecloth he grinned. “Pull out that end chair, Wallace.”
The weasel did as he was asked and slowly dragged the chair into the light.
Tom, and Wallace, looked down over the sleeping form of a softly snoring wizard.
“How can Wanda sleep with so much noise from the party,” Wallace asked?
“Easily,” said Tom. “I told her many times that the dandelion vintage of 49 was far too potent for her.”